About Chapman / Leonard

For over 75 years, Chapman / Leonard has been the leading custom camera support equipment manufacturer and supplier for television and motion picture productions.

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Chapman / Leonard is Dedicated to your success

At Chapman / Leonard, we define ourselves on the success of our customers. We are continuously improving and fine tuning our equipment based on real feedback from experts like you. We couple our award-winning equipment with best in industry support so you feel secure choosing us as a partner.

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Our Philosophy

Chapman / Leonard was founded on the single mission to produce the best camera support equipment on the market.

We design all of our products with you in mind. That is why we manufacture and build our products in the USA to meet the highest standards of performance and reliability.

Our History

For over 75 years, Chapman / Leonard has been the leading custom camera support equipment manufacturer and supplier to some of the most recognizable television and motion picture productions. Chapman / Leonard has evolved into a powerhouse in the industry, becoming a key distributor and merchant of cranes, dollies, and essential camera support accessories. Throughout the years, this legacy has only been possible with the close relationships that we have built with our users and community.

The Chapman / Leonard story begins in Southern California in 1945, when Ralph T. Chapman created Chapman Studio Equipment, in order to design and manufacture a more versatile camera crane. Over the years, Ralph’s experience in the film industry is what piqued his son Leonard’s interest in the same field. Eventually leading Leonard to create Leonard’s Studio Equipment. In 1965 the father and son merged their companies resulting in the Chapman / Leonard Studio Equipment that we know today.

As of 2020, Charles Leonard, the grandson of Leonard T. Chapman, has proudly stepped in as president and CEO of Chapman / Leonard. Charles has continued to build upon the ground breaking work of his predecessors, advancing the line up of our award winning products and services.

We have continued to evolve our equipment to accommodate for the industry's new technologies and demands. These advancements have been made possible through the research by our in-house team of engineers and technicians, coupled with the direct feedback from some of the greatest personnel in the film industry, such as Clint Eastwood, Steven Spielberg, and all the dedicated film crews who have used our equipment over the decades. We are incredibly honored and grateful to be a part of this great industry and have our equipment on the set of many prestigious films and TV shows.


Broke ground on the build of our Engineering, Manufacturing, Rentals, and Service headquarters for the East Coast in Alpharetta, GA.


Chapman / Leonard Remotes Division would begin acquiring Service Vision Scorpio Cranes.


Charles Leonard was announced as President of the company.


The new Series V of the PeeWee, Hustler and Hybrid dollies were announced, equipped with advanced lithium-ion battery technology. The new ECS base also went into production with electric drive, auto leveling and a precision dolly control valve for center post height adjustment.


Charles Leonard (the grandson of Leonard Chapman) acquired Spacecam, and the creation of the M7 Evo would commence.


The Hydrascope Telescoping Crane Arm was announced, capable of delivering shots in a variety of environments, including the ability to be completely submerged underwater.


The Super PeeWee IV was created with a built-in heating system that maintains the hydraulic oil temperature, as well as a third shift steering. The Super PeeWee IV cart holds all the accessories for the dolly.


The Super PeeWee III was developed with a universal stop valve for smooth, feathered stops in any arm position.


After 8 years of development, the Pedolly was created by combining the best features of the conventional dollies and pedestals. The evolution of its cameras and their size transformation throughout the years, resulted in the need for smaller pedestals.


The Lenny Arm III was developed to reach greater lengths. The All-Terrain Base (ATB) was also developed for easier handling of its larger crane arms.


The Lenny Arm II and the HY HY base, which helped the operator quickly level the arm by a simple rotation of the leveling rods, was created. The HY HY also has the ability to be used on or off dolly track.


The first Lenny Arm was officially introduced to the industry, with the ability to be used in both manned and remote configurations.


The Super PeeWee was developed. The Super PeeWee was a dolly that featured an electrical & rechargeable hydraulic lift.


The Olympian Sideline vehicle was created and covered the 1984 Olympics here in Los Angeles.


The first Lenny Arm Prototype was developed. The Hybrid Dolly was created, combining the maneuverability of the PEEWEE and the strength of the Hustler dolly.


The PEEWEE Dolly was introduced. Revolutionary for its time, the PEEWEE had a unique ability to work on and off the track without changing the wheels. The PEEWEE was also set up for easy transportation.


The Hustler dolly was developed. It had the ability to be used on or off track, utilizing crab and conventional steering, and leveraged a hydraulic lift system.


Ralph Chapman and his son Leonard Chapman (founder of Leonard Studio Equipment) merge their companies to create Chapman Leonard Studio Equipment Inc.


The Hercules Mobile Crane was developed, offering a leveling system, six-wheel crabbing abilities, and the ability to drive the unit to location.


The Chapman / Leonard story begins in Southern California, where Ralph T. Chapman founded Chapman Studio Equipment. Our line of equipment begins with small, medium, and large Stage Cranes.

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